[1]    "Mood Beside Fire"

[1] "Mood Beside Fire"

(Des Moines, IA - 2005) Long time friend & one of the ORIGINAL Starving Iguanas, Rich (AKA Filthy), draws with a glowing ember in this lengthened exposure.

[2]   "Anna & the Bridge"

[2] "Anna & the Bridge"

(Des Moines, IA - 2005) Anna through her arms up as she walked out towards the bridge. I luckily had my camera in hand & caught the moment.

[3]   "Fire Dragon"

[3] "Fire Dragon"

(Ankeny, IA - 2005) I was playing with movement & lengthened exposure of the fire, when my friend Rich kicked the log I was shooting, causing this fire dragon to appear.

[4]   "Strength in Numbers"

[4] "Strength in Numbers"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) Using a very small aperture & a quick shutter gave this daytime shot the appearance of being at night.

[5]  "Cold Fingers Reaching to Sun"

[5] "Cold Fingers Reaching to Sun"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006)

[6]   "Howl at the Sun"

[6] "Howl at the Sun"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) One of my favorite photos in my 1st official photo series titled "Cold Fingers". This was shot just 1 month before I 'hit the road'.

[7]   "Sky Kisser"

[7] "Sky Kisser"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) One of my mom's personal favorites & one of my 1st red filtered photos. I have since come to think of red filtered photos as a 'new type of B&W'... forcing the photo to only be black, shades of red & an occasional yellow.

[8]   "Fauxliage"

[8] "Fauxliage"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) Without the red filter, the leaf was the normal shade of green. With the addition of the red filter it earned itself the title 'Fauxliage"

[9]   "Chemtrail Hedgehog"

[9] "Chemtrail Hedgehog"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) The softness of the wispy cloud & the pointy branches were too much for me to pass up. The juxtaposition was great.

[10]  "Mercury & an Antique Syringe"

[10] "Mercury & an Antique Syringe"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) Gore, a Des Moines crazy, collected mercury (from old thermometers that he broke open). He also collected antique glass syringes (not sure why). One day he was showing us his collection of Mercury & I asked if he had ever put mercury in a syringe before. The next I know, he was shooting little beads of mercury across the table!

[11]   "Ablaze"

[11] "Ablaze"

(Des Moines, IA - 2006) At first glance this photo always looks like a fire to me.

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2005
Iowa - Carlisle & Des Moines


2005 marked the very beginning of Starving Iguanas. Up until this point (since 2001), I had only been using 35mm when I took photos. 

 

I also have included a few photos from 2006 in this collection, because they were taken before I 'Hit the road" and began my nomadic photography lifestyle. So, in my mind they belong to the 2005 collection, as I hadn't yet truly begun to create a style that was uniquely my own. 

[11A]   "First Day Out"

[11A] "First Day Out"

(Carlisle, IA - 2006) The day was March 6th, 2006... I left my hometown with my friend Matthawk & my rat Squeege in a van named Rufus P. Rockwell. This is the very first photo taken on this photographic journey that has taken me through 43 states & mexico so far. This sunset & these dirty gravel road signs are only 1 mile from my mom's house in the 'Lost Forty' woods that I grew up in ...in Carlisle, Iowa.

[12]   "Escape"

[12] "Escape"

(Niagra Falls, NY -2006) (No, this is not in Seattle!) This is actually a structure in Canada that can be seen on the American side of Niagra Falls.

[13]   "Gloomy Day"

[13] "Gloomy Day"

(Upstate New York - 2006) Matthawk & I pulled over in this park to eat lunch & get off the road for a while.

[14]   "Matthawk vs. The Seagulls"

[14] "Matthawk vs. The Seagulls"

(Boston, MA - 2006) I want to be perfectly clear about this... Matthawk ran away like a little girl from the birds, directly after this photo was taken! Hahahahahaha!

[15]   "Toxic" (B&W)

[15] "Toxic" (B&W)

(Providence, RI - 2006) One of my first 'Industrial Filth' photos. I always meant to send this photo to the mayor of Providence, with a note attached that said "Please stop this from happening"

[16]   "Toxic"

[16] "Toxic"

(Providence, RI - 2006) Between the barrel, the trash, the smoke stacks & the semi driving by on the bridge... it's no surprise that this photo inspired me to photograph other 'Industrial Filth" in hopes of stirring up people enough to make a change.

[17]  "In Bloom"

[17] "In Bloom"

(Providence, RI - 2006) Matthawk & I were exploring downtown Providence on our bikes (that we brought in our van) when I had to pull over to take this photo.

[18]   "Shiny Ring, Crusty Kid"

[18] "Shiny Ring, Crusty Kid"

(Providenc, RI - 2006) Matthawk & I were riding bikes in downtown Providence, to save gas money & help us explore easier.

[19]   "Wash Your Hands"

[19] "Wash Your Hands"

(Pennsylvania truck stop - 2006) When I saw this bar of soap in the restroom, I immediately began crackin' up & quickly went to the van to grab my camera. Matthawk saw me laughing, grab my camera & walk towards the restroom, still laughing. The look of confusion on his face was priceless.

[20]   "Shady"

[20] "Shady"

(Manhattan, NY - 2006) This was taken in Central Park, during my 1st visit to NYC.

[21]   "Centralized & Seeing Double"

[21] "Centralized & Seeing Double"

(Manhattan, NY - 2006) This was taken in Central Park during my 1st trip to NYC.

[22]   "Night Scraper"

[22] "Night Scraper"

(Manhattan, NY - 2006) Walking around Times Square with an expensive camera (my 1st time in NYC) made me very nervous. At no time are you alone. Thousands of people at all times. Even at 4am there is still hundreds of people lurking around Times Square.

[23]   "Splash of Color"

[23] "Splash of Color"

(Manhattan, NY - 2006) Using a yellow filter on my camera helped to bring out some of the normal, subtle colors, making them stand out much more than before.

[24]   "Colorful Edges"

[24] "Colorful Edges"

(Manhattan, NY - 2006) This is by one of the little ponds in Central Park.

[25]   "Jester"

[25] "Jester"

(Manhattan, NY - 2006) I have always thought that this tree (in Central Park) kind of reminded me of a Jester dancing. But, I'm also a little bit crazy.

[26]   "Jerkhouse Rooftop"

[26] "Jerkhouse Rooftop"

(Brooklyn, NY - 2006) We stayed at a punkhouse called "the Jerkhouse', we went up on the roof to drink a few beers & this is when my fascination with NYC rooftops was born.

[27]   "Jerkhouse Stoop"

[27] "Jerkhouse Stoop"

(Brooklyn, NY - 2006) Matthawk bringing out his gear from the "Jerkhouse" as members of the house talk & pack up band equipment.

[28]   "Razin Hell"

[28] "Razin Hell"

(Philadelphia, PA - 2006) Cities are gross.

[29]   "Free Library"

[29] "Free Library"

(Philadelphia, PA - 2006) This is outside Philly's Free Library. We helped Food-Not-Bombs cook & then serve food near this spot.

[30]   "Fowl-ous"

[30] "Fowl-ous"

(Washington DC - 2006) I was only trying to take a photo of the phallic monument... when this pair of Mallards swam by at the exact right moment.

[31]   "Froggy Style"

[31] "Froggy Style"

(Baltimore, MD - 2006) "You saw this frog in Baltimore?!" Yes. At the Baltimore National Aquarium.

[32]   "Friendship Park"

[32] "Friendship Park"

(Pittsburgh, PA - 2006) We were riding with Critical Mass (a worldwide monthly bicycle awareness protest). The police had already been harassing us for peacefully riding our bikes. It then began to rain. They had beaten & arrested a few non-violent bicyclists, the rest of us headed to Friendship Park to see who was arrested & who had gotten hurt. When we reached the park this is what I saw. When I turned around the other direction, I looked up to see a huge & beautiful double rainbow.

[33]   "Gothic"

[33] "Gothic"

(Pittsburgh, PA - 2006) I took this photo as a friend & I rode bikes down the huge hill of Mt. Washington on the opposite side of this river.

[34]   "30 Seconds in Pittsburgh"

[34] "30 Seconds in Pittsburgh"

(Pittsburgh, PA - 2006) As you may have guessed, this is a 30 second exposure. The streaks of light are about 1/2 a second of me moving the camera, before I set it down for the rest of the 30 seconds. I am sitting in front (you can barely make out my mohawk). No one else sat still enough to really show up, but there are 4 of us.

[35]   "Millipede"

[35] "Millipede"

(Pittsburgh, PA -2006) One of my favorite 'Grimey' photos. This paint & tar splattered rain gutter pipe has been guessed as a lobster tail, as well as a Millipede.

[36]   "Free Ride"

[36] "Free Ride"

(Pittsburgh, PA - 2006) During our time spent in Pittsburgh, we volunteered at a bike co-op called "Free Ride".

[37]   "Mary Got Plastered"

[37] "Mary Got Plastered"

(Pittsburgh, PA - 2006) A painting of the virgin Mary that got plastered over in our friends' house.

[38]   "Desolate"

[38] "Desolate"

(Wisconsin - 2006) A yellow filter helped these beams of lights stand out even more in this desolate land of powerlines.

[39]   "Peeking Over"

[39] "Peeking Over"

(Chippewa Falls, WI - 2006) Having dipped away from the disc golf course, we discovered a rope swing on the other side of this mossy landscape.

[40]   "Steve WAS There"

[40] "Steve WAS There"

(Chippewa Falls, WI - 2006) A decrepit old structure in the woods, that essentially has BECOME one with the woods itself. Scratched into the wall with a child like grace is scrawled the word 'Steve'.

[41]   "Fire & Brimstone"

[41] "Fire & Brimstone"

(Chippewa Falls, WI - 2006) An aged gravestone, mystical clouds & a red filter? Sounds good to me. The funniest comment I ever got about this photo came from my friend, Adrienne... "Whoa dude! ...You never told me you went to the gates of hell!"

[42]   "Firey Eye in the Sky"

[42] "Firey Eye in the Sky"

(Chippewa Falls, WI - 2006) It's amazing that a simple piece of red glass can suddenly make innocent pine trees look so ominous!

2006

Niagra Falls (NY), Boston, Providence (RI), NYC, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, DC, Chippewa Falls (WI) & Minnesota  


March 6th, 2006 was the day I began exploring the American countryside, camera in hand. Matthawk & I left Iowa in our van, Rufus P. Rockwell... heading Northeast through Chicago, up to Niagra Falls & over to Boston (for St. Patrick's Day). Afterwards, we headed South to Providence, then continued onward into NYC.

 

It was my time in NYC that helped begin the majority of my 'urban decay' photos, focusing my eye onto the grimey breakdown of manmade objects & the subtle idea of 'Nature Winning over Time'.

 

We continued South into Baltimore, DC, Philadelphia & finally stopped in Pittsburgh. After a bit we eventually headed back towards the Midwest. The forests of Chippewa Falls (WI) & the Minnesota lakes were a much needed breath of fresh air... after spending so much time in big cities.